After a historic regular season that featured a nine-game winning streak to start the season, Coral Springs Charter Baseball team began their quest for a district championship with a 2-0 win courtesy of a pair of runs in the bottom of the sixth inning.
This marks the second straight year they have won a district game after last year’s 18 inning marathon against Pine Crest.
Junior Chris Kahler, celebrating his 17th birthday on Tuesday, was on the mound and threw one of his best games of the season. With no run support throughout, Kahler gave the Panthers everything he had, allowing no runs on two hits in six innings.
“The kid stepped up. He trusted his pitch calling and went for it. We couldn’t have asked for anything better, said head coach Charlie Fine, who added, “We have struggled offensively this year, but we make the most of the base runners we get and we put people in positions to succeed.”
Early on, Kahler worked around base runners in the second and third to keep Pompano Beach off the board as the two teams remained scoreless heading into the bottom of the fourth. The Panthers managed just two hits through five innings and Kahler once again worked his magic this time in the sixth.
With a runner on third base and one out, Kahler got a pop out to the catcher for the second out and a fly out to Nick Giglio to end his day.
The Panthers finally struck for a pair of runs in the sixth after Justin Chung singled with two outs. With Chung running, senior Devin Makovsky drove in his 11th run of the season as he doubled into the gap scoring the first run of the game. Shortly after, Gavin Conticello added a bit of insurance with an RBI single setting it up for Carl Lassalle to get the final three outs, and his third save of the year.
It also gave Kahler his fifth win of the season to lead the team.
“I didn’t have my best stuff, but I competed,” Kahler said. “I’m glad my team had my back and they came through in the sixth to help me out big time.”
With the win, the Panthers have moved on to face North Broward Prep Eagles in the semi-finals Wednesday afternoon at 4 p.m. These two teams met earlier this season with both teams winning on the road.
The winner of this game will play for a district championship.
- Matt Rothman is a 2018 graduate from Florida Gulf Coast University receiving his bachelor’s degree in journalism. He is now attending the University of Florida as a graduate student. Matt also covers the New York Islanders for The Hockey Writer, the New York Mets for Last Word on Baseball and Florida Gators Athletics for ESPN Gainesville.
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